The reservoir of new Swedish Metal bands seems to be just endless. Hot on the trails of High Roller recording artists Ambush, Air Raid, Lethal Steel, and so many others, there is Armory, a speed metal outfit from the lovely city of Gothenburg. Originally formed in the late summer of 2012 (out of the ashes of a band called Resurrector), Armory recorded their first demo »Open Fire« in December 2012, followed by »S.M.I.« (short for “Speed Metal Island”, referring to the island Hisingen in Gothenburg, where the band is located).
That does indeed sound very interesting. And also very forward-looking for a young band such as Armory. The future does look bright for them, although there is a lot of competition as the guitars explains: ”It really feels like there is a big wave of new, fast and hungry speed metal bands coming up! That’s really great because speed metal is the most perfect form of music created in our universe (so far). Many of the bands seem to be located in Scandinavia, but the scene seems to be growing everywhere! Here in Sweden we have Tyranex, Antichrist, Immaculate and Enforcer; Finland has Ranger; Norway has Töxik Death, Deathhammer, Nekromantheon and Black Viper. Some great new speed metal bands from other countries include Sacral Rage, Vektor, Dungeon, Evil Invaders, Encyrcle and Speed Queen… And probably a lot more…”
So are Armory’s tastes geared more towards technical speed and thrash metal or do they like it a bit rawer? The ten tracks on their debut album are very diverse, showing both styles. Gustav Sundin: ”It all depends who in the band you ask, really, but I guess you could say we like both styles equally overall. Since we all participate in the music-writing the music easily gets very diverse, since we all have our own influences and references to whatever we would like to write. Ingelman is mainly the one writing the most technical parts, but Anglegrinder also has his moments of technicality, although his style of writing mostly resembles the black/thrash scene in a speed metal way, while Ingelman has lots of influences from the progressive US Metal scene. Our Singer Konstapel P’s contributions to the music writing are very much influenced by the German speed/thrash scene, but also some of the earlier German power metal acts such as Helloween (pre-Kiske era), Scanner, and of course Running Wild, as mentioned before. We have tried to combine all of our different influences in order to create an album as diverse as possible, while at the same time staying 100% true to our speed metal roots at all times. Luckily, speed metal is quite a broad and versatile genre, which has enabled us to explore different directions in our sound.”
A song like “Hell’s Fast Blades” is indeed pretty damn, well, fast and furious, reminding me a bit of very early raw Exodus… ”Fast and furious we ride the universe!” jokes Gustav. ”’Hell’s Fast Blades’ is perhaps our rawest and heaviest song. This song adds an evil doomsday feeling to the album, which fitted perfectly with our goal of creating an album as diverse as possible, without ever compromising regarding the quality. It is also a great live song which usually gets the front row bangers going crazy.”[/spoiler]
Armory’s singer, Konstapel P., has a very distinctive voice, he is no high-pitched screamer and no growler as well, his style of vocal delivery is more mid-range… ”In my opinion, his voice adds a unique flavour to our music,” confirms Gustav. ”What makes his singing style so special is that he does all his falsettos inwards instead of outwards, like most ‘normal’ singers do! Apart from this, he also disposes quite an arsenal of snarls, screams, howls and cleaner singing as well. I guess it is just something that developed gradually and naturally over time.”
The guitar work on »World Peace … Cosmic War« is really good, so is Armory a guitar-driven band after all? ”Of course all metal music, and perhaps speed metal in particular, is guitar-driven in some way,” explains Gustav. ”As we are also huge fans of almighty and legendary heavy metal bands like Judas Priest and Iron Maiden, we also like to incorporate lots of twin guitar parts in our songs. This doesn’t mean that the other instruments have to stand back though, quite the opposite in our case, but guitar solos and melodies tend to stand out more when you listen to it. I totally understand why you can get this impression while listening to our music, but we would never let the other instruments stand back in order to put more focus on the guitar work… It’s all or nothing, all the time!”
All or nothing – all the time!
What a fitting motto for a band like Armory.
01. World Peace… (Intro) (01:09)
02. Cosmic War (03:51)
03. High Speed Death (03:06)
04. Hell’s Fast Blades (05:25)
05. Spinning Towards Doom (03:48)
06. Without Days, Without Years (04:10)
07. Artificial Slavery (05:27)
08. Phantom Warrior (03:01)
09. Final Breath (02:39)
10. Space Marauders (09:17)
Armory – World Peace… Cosmic War (2016)
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